Read the story of how the Canal & River Trust came to be
Work for us
We have vacancies across all of our waterways and in the offices, museums and attractions that support them. We're one of the UK's biggest charities and we take pride in everything we do
If you're thinking of getting in touch then please take a moment to look through these pages as we probably have the answer on our website
Planning & design
All you need to know about planning and design on our canals and rivers
Find a winter mooring
Find a cosy section of canal to hunker down in this winter
10 reasons to take up canoeing
It's a great way to get fit and explore our waterways at the same time
Share the Space
Take a look at our common sense guide to sharing the towpath
Find a place to fish
From reservoirs to club-managed canals and river stretches - find your nearest place to fish
Get your free guide
Download your free guide today and start exploring the waterway nature near you
Download your free guides
You've nine free days out guides to choose from - where will you go first?
Find a walk near you
Are you ready to ramble? Find a waterside stroll or a satisfying hike along our beautiful canals and rivers
Take a look at our upcoming events here.
Find your favourite waterway
With over 95 canals, rivers, reservoirs, docks and navigations, find out more about your favourite waterway
Something for everyone
Help us make a difference and have fun along the way. Find your perfect volunteer role today
Join our team
Could you join your local Towpath Taskforce team and help us to keep our canals looking lovely?
Desmond Family Canoe Trail
If you're aged 16-25 and would like to get involved with this exciting project, please get in touch
Could you be a volunteer lock keeper?
Find out what's involved with this popular volunteering opportunity
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
Imagine being able to take your house and park it in some of the most inspiring and beautiful parts of England and Wales - this is what life on a boat holiday is like.
On a boat you never get bored of looking out the window and seeing the same thing, because you can change the view from your window every day.
With over 2,000 miles of our canals and rivers for you to cruise, the sheer choice of holiday routes can seem daunting at first, but it's really just a case of deciding what you want to get out of your holiday.
What skills do I need?
Worried about managing a canal boat? Fear not, help is at hand
What should I pack?
Find out more about the all important packing question
Read our suggestions for first-time boaters
First choose a location, either a place that you've previously fallen in love with or an area that you've always wanted to explore. Then, it's pretty much plain-sailing from there. Deciding what you want to do all day will also help to narrow down your options.
So if you love the bustling activity and sights of the city, go for routes that pass through major cities like Birmingham or Manchester. But if you prefer peaceful surroundings, there's a huge choice of rural waterways around the country. Create a journey that's entirely catered towards the needs of you or your friends and family.
During the summer months you can expect to cruise on your canal boat for anywhere between four and seven hours a day.
Travelling at around 3-4mph for four hours a day will mean you cover around 80 to 100 miles in a week. This will still provide plenty of time for lazy lunches and energetic exploring. You should also make sure you allow extra time in your schedule to go through locks, as it will take you around 15 minutes extra to get through each one. An energetic party could manage it in less though.
Booking a boating holiday is much the same as booking a holiday abroad – just choose the location you would like to travel to and work from there.
Normally your boat holiday operator will discuss the routes available within the area you have booked. Most companies will have cruising maps that you can buy.
Your route depends on your personal choice. Larger crews of two families may fancy covering more miles on their boat, with an energetic route or a cruising ring. However, groups of friends might enjoy a city cruise - with lots of things to see and do these make for a very undemanding route.
Personal skill and confidence behind the tiller of your boat may also play a large part when it comes to choosing your route. If you're new to boating you may want to avoid routes with lots of locks, such as the hilly approaches to Birmingham. However, if you have energetic children then lots of locks can keep them entertained and actually work to your advantage!
The price of a canal holiday can vary widely and is dependant upon a number of factors, such as how many people are going, the length of the break you are taking, and the time of year you are going.
Couples can expect to pay around £300 – £400 for a short break, or £500 – £800 for a week-long break. Whilst a family of four can expect a cost of around £500 – £700 for a short break, and £700 – £1,000 for a week-long cruise. Prices are typically higher during the peak times of December and the summer months of May, June, July, August and September.
When you split the cost of a canal holiday between friends it's a very affordable option.
What's happening near you?
Look at our Local to You pages to find all the latest in your local area, including news, events, stories and details of how you can get involved with our work
Last date edited: 3 April 2017